Burnley FC players battle sickness bug

BURNLEY’S players stayed away from training on Monday in a bid to stop a sickness bug from spreading within the camp.

Wednesday, 3rd November 2010, 8:24 am

Laws’ team selection was affected at QPR on Saturday, with both Jack Cork and Andre Bikey only able to make the bench after becoming ill after Wednesday night’s Carling Cup exit at Aston Villa.

Wade Elliott and Danny Fox soldiered through the 1-1 draw at Loftus Road, but both David Edgar and Brian Easton were were unfit to feature in the 18-man matchday squad.

Laws is eager to isolate the bug and prevent more players suffering, hampering preparations for Saturday’s game at Norwich City.

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Cork and Bikey were surprise ommisions at QPR, although it became apparent before kick-off that the pair were among the worst affected - with Laws describing Cork as “running on empty”.

But Laws was thrilled to see his men knuckle down to take on the Championship’s unbeaten leaders, and knock them off their perch.

Adel Taarabt gave the Hoops the lead against the run of play with a 25-yard screamer, before Graham Alexander’s penalty, right on the stroke of half-time, earned a draw, which was the least Burnley deserved.

It was the first goal QPR have conceded at home so far this season, and Laws said: “We had six players violently sick on Wednesday and Thursday and it wiped them out!

“There is nothing you can do when a bug like that flies around.

“It wasn’t one after another – it was all six at one time and that’s why this was an amazing performance because the work they put in on an empty tank, you have to give the lads great credit.

“Some of those players started and that’s why I am so pleased.

“I was hoping not to use it as an excuse, but I had to make decisions on the team because I even had players on the bench who might have got in the team, but were worse.”

Burnley stayed down in the Midlands after the game at Villa Park, before travelling to Watford on Friday ahead of the trip to QPR.

And the close proximity of the players over that spell had obviously contributed to the bug spreading.

Laws was taking no riskson Mondayy, and told his players to stay away from Turf Moor and Gawthorpe: “They have earned a day off now and thankfully we can isolate them now and hopefully ensure nobody else falls ill, because we have a massive week ahead of us.”